2015’s Top 25 San Diego Comic-Con Exclusives

Thumbnail image for drwhoA.jpg

Ah, San Diego Comic Con. Not only do you have to vie against hordes of other fans to get into panels and get autographs, but they’ll also be competing against you for limited edition convention exclusives. Companies keep announcing new exclusives daily right up until the show opens, and keeping track of which booth has which exclusives is almost as big a headache as strategizing the programming schedule. There are so many this year (it’s only a matter of time until they reach critical mass) you should probably bring an extra suitcase just for exclusives. Or shipping them back home before leaving San Diego works too.

Just make sure you bring a full piggy bank with you or you won’t be leaving with any of this limited edition merchandise. (Just tell your fellow con-goers it’s Waddles.) This event specializes in parting nerds from their money. Pro tip: Buy everything you want from mutli-item vendors like Funko and Entertainment Earth in one trip to avoid sell-outs and line waiting, Also check if retailers are are also offering pre-orders on their exclusive wares online for pick-up at the con. Based on the metric ton of exclusive merch announced, I doubt it’s even physically possible to purchase each one there (presuming you’re ridiculously wealthy to afford it all in the first place). So which exclusives should you make a point of waiting on line for this year?

25) First Order Storm Trooper Hot Wheels


Did you hear they’re making another Star Wars movie? This time the Stormtrooper armor is slightly different! Now they each get a matched pair of greaves. Their helmets are also pre-configured as duckfaces should the need for a Post-Imperial selfie arise. To commemorate this minimalist redesign, Hot Wheels is transmogrifying it into a car.

Much like Hasbro’s SDCC exclusive Black Series First Order Stormtrooper, this is an exclusive in packaging only. If you don’t feel like waiting until December for this to hit mass market retail, you can pick up the early SDCC edition with “Real Riders rubber tires” and plastic clamshell around its packaging for extra protection. That way, if the additional packaging is ever damaged, you can remove it and still have a mint regular edition car. It’s an obsessively paranoid MOC collector’s dream! Of course if the First Order (more like Fashionably Late Stormtrooper) armor is just as useless as classic Stormtrooper armor, your Hot Wheels should self destruct as soon as that box gets dinged for film accuracy. (This exclusive really isn’t that great in comparison to Mattel’s BVSDOJ Batmobile Hot Wheels, Secret Wars Hot Wheels or Thomas & Friends Superfriends, but I couldn’t pass up an excuse to mock Stormtroopers.)

24) CineQuest Orphan Black #4 Variant


There will be plenty of con-sclusive variant cover comics vying for your hard earned paychecks. Instead of highlighting any of DC’s or Marvel’s, I direct your attention to CineQuest’s booth for IDW’s Orphan Black #4. Yup, poor Marvel and DC will have to fall back on their movie studio money without an endorsement here. Not only is Orphan Black one of the best TV shows to never have its lead actress be nominated for an Emmy, its tie-in comic maintains that quality by being written by co-creator John Fawcett.

My main reason for singling out this variant out of all the competition is its Alan Quah cover. If you’re going to spend $10 on a convention exclusive cover, it might as well be one featuring multiple Maslanys for your moolah. It’s the kind of cover that works best as a convention exclusive, yet it manages not to feel out of place with the show. I could totally see season four pulling off an episode where the main Leda clones carpool to Comic Con for hijinks. The only sticking point is that they’re bringing that duplicitous Rachel along too. Why would Cosima invite her over Scott? She knows he could’ve found a sitter for Denise!

23) BBC Doctor Who Companions shirt


Ever since Doctor Who regenerated onto TV screens in 2005, there’s been a greater focus on his companions. They get story arcs while the Doctor acts as their Manic Pixie Dream Guy or Fairy Godfather. (Actually, this trend can be traced back at least as far as Ace, but neither Davies nor Moffat have seen fit to bring her back for more badarsery.) So why not commemorate their dynamic contributions to the series with some limited edition apparel? You’ve got enough Dalek swag in your wardrobe anyway, so why not mix it up a bit?

It’s hard enough finding shirts with any companions, but BBC is going to compensate by putting all their names on a single shirt. (Congrats on your upgrade, Wilfred Mott! So sorry about your snubbing, Adam Mitchell and Courtney Woods.) They’re aligned to form a not-so-secret message of “companions,” as if the “Doctor Who” on the back wasn’t enough of a context clue for non-Whovian observers. This $20 shirt will instantly become outdated as soon as Jenna Coleman’s replacement is announced. Now can we get a shirt with all the names of the classic companions for SDCC 2016?

22) NECA Ambush Predator


Tons of 2015 exclusives are based on nostalgia. My problem is that most of them, particularly ReAction, tend to be purposefully outdated anachronisms rather than quality uses of plastic. NECA, on the other hand, understand that recapturing what made the original cool in an updated form is worth your money more than intentionally inferior replicas. (Buy actual vintage toys from SDCC vendors instead if you need a real nostalgia fix.) That’s where their $30 Ambush Predator comes in.

This sucker is a homage to Kenner’s mail away Ambush Predator. So it’s a Predator cast in clear plastic to evoke its cloaking camouflage. (That puts it ahead of NECA’s similar Endoglow Terminator, which is sadly not 100% glow in the dark plastic like its forbearer.) Since this is a NEA release, however, that means it’s a 7″ highly articulated movie accurate sculpt instead of a 5″ approximation of the movie suit with five points of articulation. They’ve also ugraded the packaging from the original’s plain white box, though it still has the Pris eyeliners becoming a murder of crows on its noggin like the original. Not only is it one of the rare NECA predators to include a removable helmet, it comes in both original chrome and fully painted in case you’re one of those weirdos who hates shiny things. Somebody should politely tell this invisible Yautja its ginormous arm blades are showing, but it’s not going to be me.

21) Tina Fey & Amy Poehler SNL Weekend Update Set


This may be the most out of left field exclusive this year. Yes, Biff Bang Pow! is making toys of former SNL Weekend Update hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler for Entertainment Earth. This $30 set includes a Weekend Update studio diorama, though it doesn’t appear to include chairs for authentic sitting at a desk action. Fey and Poehler are so important they not only get to be immortalized as action figures but as themselves, not characters they’ve played. How many non-political figures can say the same? (Please tell me in the comments, as the deadline didn’t leave me enough time to look it up.) Future civilizations will take this as proof that Tina Fey and Amy Poehler were worshipped as Goddesses. Congratulations, ladies!

The reason this didn’t score higher is that they’ll be 3.75″ scale, making them too small to fit in with X Toys’ SNL line from 2000. That dashes my dreams of having my Samurai Baker action figure be an anachronistic Weekend Update correspondent. Of course if you don’t care about mixing scales, team this set up with your Lamont Cranston, Baymax, Star-Lord, and Axe Cop figures to start the best 30 Rock/Parks & Rec crossover that never happened.

20) Talking George R. R. Martin Armored Plush


Way to undermine my Fey and Poehler entry, Factory Entertainment! Now you can cuddle up to a George R. R. Martin without resorting to kidnapping. This doll comes outfitted in a less swank version of Tyrion’s Battle of Blackwater armor to differentiate it from the non-exclusive version in casual wear. Each includes a card that Martin signed when he should’ve been writing The Winds of Winter.

Plus the doll says twelve quotes recorded by Martin himself, two of which are exclusive to this version. I wager they are “QUIT ASKING ME WHEN THE NEXT BOOK IS COMING OUT!!!” and “Neil Gaiman says I’m not your bitch!” Limited to only 500 pieces, this item is sure to sell out fast. $60 may seem steep, but expect prices to rise on the secondary market once disgruntled buyers burn theirs in as retribution via sympathetic magic for Martin killing off their favorite characters.

19) Transformers: Generations Combiner Wars Devastator


Remember when that SDCC repaint set of Arcee, Chromia, and Windblade referenced Optimus’s Angels hunting Devastator? Well you can get an exclusive Devastator at the same time you pick up the Cybertronian gynoid squad. It’d help if you brought along a handtruck because Devastator is Voyager class. I actually don’t know what that means. Can Hasbro just use numeric scales for exactitude? Or at least name their different scale ranges something that a normal person can understand like Minicule, Small, Medium, Large, Extra Large, and Life Size? The point being is that Devastator is 18″ tall, and his fancy box is even bigger.

As opposed to the regular version, this Devastator has vac-metallic parts and a face with eyes instead of a Cyclops visor. All six Constructicons are included for the Build-A-Figure. It lacks a pair of wrecking balls to spare you from associating it with Revenge of the Fallen. All this will only set you back $180. (That’s not quite as bad when you consider the super limited 12″ The Dude costs $200 and will still sell out by the time security waves you inside.) But it also includes a variant cover of IDW’s Transformers Combiner Hunters #1. So if you’re bitter that SDCC isn’t really about comics anymore, you can say it’s a $180 comic book that came with a free toy.

18) Pocket Stan T-Shirt


Do you nerdgasm when Stan “The Man” Lee cameos in various media? Do you wish he’d cameo in your life? Do you want to shrink him down to keep in your pocket wherever you go? If you answered “yes” to any of those questions, then Stan Lee Collectibles has the exclusive t-shirt of your True Believer dreams! Of course their whole raison d’?tre is to sell you Stan Lee items, so it’d be an oversight if it didn’t.

25 smackers gets you one Pocket Stan T-shirt of your own to wear on any occasion. This is the ideal attire for when his cult of personality becomes a regular cult. It depicts a Lilliputian Smilin’ Stan chilling in your signed shirt pocket whilst flashing the web shooter gang sign and shouting “EXCELSIOR!” Note that Pocket Stan does not actually shoot webs. Nor can you store any items alongside him in its trompe l’oeil pocket. And this shirt was not personally autographed by Mr. Lee. Unless you suffer from auditory hallucinations, he will not actually exclaim “EXCELSIOR!” either. If you’re more of a Kirby fan, the Pocket Stan’s caveats represent Stan Lee’s career in a nutshell rather than being design flaws.

17) Aliens – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Vinyl Record


Here’s a new spin on a seminal piece of sci-fi cinema. Mondo is transferring the late James Horner’s Aliens score to an oversize vinyl audio-discus. It contains twenty-four tracks, including five rare bonus ones. You can get it in either blue and black vinyl or yellow vinyl with black stripes – that way you can reenact the Alien Queen vs. Ripley’s Power Loader climax if you have two turn tables. Both come in a spooky slipcover illustrated by Kilian Eng.

Mondo says that whatever stock isn’t sold at the con will go up online. Given how successful its BTAS album variants were last year, I doubt that’s a possibility you have to give much weight to. When it comes to this item, the records will be the colonial marines outnumbered by ravenous xenomorphs. I mean con attendees. They’re the real monsters.

16) Alfred Pennyworth ARTFX+ Statue


Kotobukiya may be best known for its Anime-flavored Bishoujo line of superheroines like their exclusive Red She-Hulk, but they make statues of guys too. This 8″ figurine of Batman’s batman, Alfred Pennyworth, is proof. Now you don’t need to be heir to the Wayne fortune to have a permanently indentured senior citizen bring you tea anymore! This statue even has his eyebrow arched incredulously for when you start talking to it like it’s a real person.

So what’s a Pennyworth worth nowadays? About $35, which actually sounds reasonable for a brand new sculpt. At that price you’d best make a beeline straight to Kotobukiya’s booth before they sell out. They come runnin’ just as fast as they can, ’cause every fan’s crazy ’bout a sharp dressed man.

15) 6″ Penny Dreadful Action Figures


Most SDCC exclusive toys are just repaints in fancy boxes. On the other hand, Biff Bang Pow! is doing a whole exclusive assortment of brand new 6″ Penny Dreadful action figures like a mad overachiever! Now you can also get Vanessa Ives, Ethan Chandler, werewolf Ethan, Dr. Frankentein, Proteus, Dorian Gray, and Sir Malcolm to boot. The Secret Diary of a Victorian Call Girl toy is MIA though. These look like a Funko Legacy series, yet they’re surprisingly not one of Funko’s numerous exclusives at all! Each retails for $23 and is limited to 2,800 pieces, which is both too affordable for SDCC and too limited given how starved its fans are for merchandise.

As someone who doesn’t have Showtime, I don’t have a personal investment in the show. I’m still considering getting a Vanessa to use as Mina Murray alongside my Mezco Captain Nemo. After all, the show’s working title was I Can’t Believe It’s Not League of Extraordinary Gentlemen! Sir Malcolm, however, might be the most bang for your buck as it includes the most accessories. Plus he can join James Bond, Prince Barin, Rassilon, and Mr. Pricklepants in the expanding army of Timothy Dalton toys. And then the Funko Rocketeer can sock him. Damn this assignment for tempting me with things I don’t even care about! Better snap them all up now because it’ll be dreadful to pay a penny more for them on eBay!

14) The Goon 3D Print


Are unadorned walls the bane of your existence? You can remedy this with The Goon 3D Print from Dark Horse for $25. It’s the ideal painting for the side of your van for people who don’t own vans! It’s limited to just 300, but you’re allowed to get five per person per day. So if you need to unburden yourself of $625, you can walk home the proud owner of twenty-five The Goon 3D prints. Is that enough to festoon your coworker’s cubicles? You and eleven other greedy high rollers can corner the entire market on 3D The Goon prints!

Dark Horse has yet to release clarification about what the 3D aspect of this print entails. Do you need special 3-D glasses to see the effect? Does it come with a pair or do you have to not recycle your RealD 3D glasses next time you go to an overpriced movie? Is it lenticular so it looks like it moves when you tilt your head? Is it embossed so it physically has a third dimension? Or is it just a regular print mean to evoke the 3-D movie posters or yore? However it plays out, you’ll still be getting a rare SDCC exclusive for a comic book without a mass media tie-in … until David Fincher gets the funding for the CGI The Goon cartoon movie starring Clancy Brown and Paul Giamatti. All profits from this print should really go towards that.

13) Batman Vs. The Mutant Leader Deluxe Set


In retrospect, The Dark Knight Returns was a strong indication that Frank Miller was off his rocker. Why else would he do a Judge Dredd cover without the tongue in cheek? Look no further than Batman taking on the Mutant Leader, the one dimensional boss of a gang named The Mutants. If their Cyclops visors weren’t enough of a tip-off, the gang appeared to be comprised of literal mutants with albino skin, fangs, and the most dangerous-looking nipples ever. (Nobody would dare to insult Batman & Robin if Batman had nipples like that on his breastplate.) So one of the most iconic Bat-fights is basically Batman performing a hate crime. To coincide with America finally noticing that seditious flags aren’t patriotic, you can now take home a limited-edition action figure set also commemorating something it took folks way too long to realize was in bad taste.

The SDCC versions of Mezco’s 6″ figures with cloth costumes come battle damaged and caked in mud to save you the trouble of wrecking them yourself for authenticity. It includes a knockout foam accessory to obscure the Mutant Leader’s face, whereas Batman features an exclusive “WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOUR FACE?” head sculpt. In case your local dump has banned you from playing with your toys there, Mezco has thoughtfully included a polystone Gotham City Junk Yard base. To justify the $150 price tag, all 10,000 of the set come with a Poison Ivy Mini Mez-Itz Clip-On. If that’s too much for you to spend on a TDKR homage, Mattel is offering a $30 Superman vs. Batman set that looks more colorful than BVSDOJ.

12) Chia Pet Moss Man


This is a no-brainer that took way too long to happen (probably due to licensing). Now you can watch as your very own Moss Man grows real moss … or whatever plant chia actually is. (Hint: It’s related to mint!) If you choose not to water your Moss Man, the terra cotta figurine doubles as Beast Man for vintage verisimilitude. Now can we get a Chia Pet Poison Ivy next?

Super 7 is selling these Chia Men for $30. It appears that you’ll first need to obtain a Skeletoken from at the Super 7 or Mattel booth to purchase this at the offsite Skeletor’s Lair pop-up store in San Diego. Yes, you must leave the convention center to buy this. That seems like an unnecessary amount of effort to buy something during SDCC, maybe even more so than LEGO’s and Bandai’s raffle lines. Why do they want to make it even harder for fans to give them money for things they don’t need?

11) Flash TV Deluxe Letter Opener


Don’t be one of those plebians who tears open envelopes open with their fingers! What you need is a letter opener, preferably one shaped like the TV version of the Flash’s logo! Coincidentally, Icon Heroes is making them for Action Figure Xpress to sell at SDCC. You too can become the fastest junk mail opener alive! (Not recommended for opening emails.)

Unlike common letter openers that just look like the tiny swords they are, the lightning bolt lifts out of the circular paperweight base for all you bill slicing needs. This could probably work as a wall plaque or part of your Flash costume, provided you fuse the pieces together securely with E6000 glue. Or throw the base away and keep the lightning bolt to smite nonbelievers when you declare yourself Maxie Zeus. Despite its irregular form, it’s still just as lethal as you average letter opener even when not wielded by the Reverse Flash. It might as well be called $28 Deluxe Murder Weapon.

10) Vinyl Idolz: Ghostbusters – Marshmallowed Raymond Stantz


Topless Robot already showed you Funko’s SDCC exclusive Vinyl Idolz Slimed Peter Venkman, so now we present his con-sclusive brother in goo, Vinyl Idolz Marshmallowed Ray Stanz. Funko will also have a Marshmallowed Egon Spengler to store with your spores, molds, and fungi. (Now when are we getting a Vinyl Idolz Winston Zeddemore to complete the Aardman-esque ghostbusting team?) Whereas the exclusive Venkman features him dripping with Slimer’s ectoplasm, this limited edition repaint depicts Ray at the finale covered in the remains of the giant Mr. Stay-Puft conjured from his subconscious. Or it’s Ray slathered in bukkake. Wait, what?!

I couldn’t help it. It just popped in there. Either I’ve been writing for TR for too long, or the hidden secret to Ghostbusters’s enduring popularity is homoerotic undertones. The guys do save the day by crossing streams from their phallic neutrino wands, after all. (Somebody tell Paul Feig that Sapphic subtext will be the key to winning over divided moviegoers.) Just try to get that image out of your head when you buy something you loved from your childhood at Funko’s booth.

9) Penny Dreadful Frankenstein Sketchbook Deluxe Journal


Are your toy shelves already collapsing from an overcrowding of of plastic effigies? Then why not overburden your bookshelves next? I’m going to steer your champagne taste to a classy $30 replica of Frankenstein’s journal from Penny Dreadful. Now that’ll impress your pals when they snoop through your bookshelves!

Even if it weren’t limited to just 1,500 copies, Frankenstein’s journal is probably a better investment for you than more toys. Where else can you learn how to master life and death itself in 160 pages? (Hopefully the real version won’t also be festooned with Entertainment Earth watermarks.) With 1,499 other buyers also armed with the knowledge of how to make patchwork zombies, you can’t afford to be left out! Maybe it’ll even reveal why Victor Frankenstein and his monster are on the show when Mary Shelly’s novel is set about sixty years prior? With its low print run, it’ll definitely have resale value to the demons of I, Frankenstein. If this is a success, hopefully they’ll reprint Frankenstein’s How I Did It next!

8) Hikari: Universal Monsters – Antique Verdigris Metaluna Mutant


Funko is running neck and neck with Entertainment Earth to be the vendor with the most exclusives. I could highlight one of their limited edition Funko POP!s, but that’d be unconscionable given how addictive the cute little buggers are. While the other con-goers fight to collect them all, why don’t you aim for something more esoteric? That’s where the Hikari Antique Verdigris Metaluna Mutant swoops in to rescue money from the clutches of your wallet with its pincer paws.

While other Hikari look smoothed out, this alien critter kept all his characteristic wrinkles. It’s the odd proportions that contribute the cute factor rather than a soft sculpt. While it may not come from anybody’s favorite Universal movie, the patina paint job makes it the classiest looking alien around. This vinyl statue is limited to 500 pieces, so expect it to cost more than most exclusive Funko merch, yet be slightly more attainable than their POP! Bryan Fuller. Just imagine how much more it’d cost if it was solid bronze. Put this on your desk and people will respect you as a person of wealth and taste, which is why you should never let them find out it’s just hollow rubber.

7) Marvel Pins


Do you love chibi versions of comic characters but don’t have the space to collect the various vinyl dolls in that style? Marvel has solved your predicament with an assortment of enamel pins based on the adorable artwork of Skottie Young. There are twenty-eight to collect, which would be perfect if workplace Flair was still a thing. So stick ’em on a corkboard if you’re not going to wear them all at once.

Here’s where things get complicated. There are four four-packs (Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, Spider-Man, Woman of Marvel, and absolutely no Fantastic Four) at $25 each. Ultimate Nick Fury comes with a $15 lanyard Patton Oswalt will probably gush over next season on Agents of SHIELD. You can only buy the $10 Ant-Man, Vision, and Ultron pins if you’ve already bought a certain amount at Marvel’s booth. (To get all three for $30 you need to spend $90 first.) Captain America, Hulk, Iron Fist, Loki, Black Panther, Captain Marvel, Iron Patriot, and Black Bolt are only available in blind box two-packs at $12.50 a pop. Marvel says “Fans are encouraged to come by the Marvel Booth (Booth #2329) at specially planned Pin Trading Hours and trade with other fans and collectors. Please refer to the official booth schedule for scheduled Pin Trading Hours.” This is definitely a thing that won’t happen.

6) The Walking Dead Brass Katana Bracelet


Nerdy jewelry can be tricky to come by. It’s either tacky charm bracels or really expensive custom fripperies. But if you’re a fan of Michonne (and who isn’t?), you can now grab this $40 brass bracelet from Skybound that looks classy without busting your bank. It’s shaped like one of her katanas but curved in around itself to gird your wrist. It also says The Walking Dead, but on the inside so you can tell mutie fans it’s from Leonardo or Deadpool. There are only 200 like it on the entire planet. It comes in a velvet pouch with red foil lettering perfect for storing whatever change you have left over from the con.

This bracelet commemorates the time when the zombie blacksmith neutralized her sword by reforging it all warped. Wait … that didn’t happen. The show would be so much better if they were up against cunning zombie blacksmiths, though. The design is just to keep you from using Michonne’s mini katana as a weapon so nobody gets their eyes gouged out with it. Skybound is offering a steel pendant replica of Lucille, a baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire, for that, silly.

5) Chief Lin Beifong Pre-Painted Model Kit


Fans of Avatar haven’t had much luck with merchandise. Mattel refused to make any of the awesome female characters in its Avatar: The Last Airbender line. The Spin Master movie toys were just as bad as it was. Then The Legend of Korra didn’t get any action figures at all. Nickelodeon isn’t going to fix this travesty, but they are taking a step in the right direction by producing an 11″ PVC model kit of Chief Lin Beifong via Zwyer Industries. It’s like a statue but you get a bonus feeling of accomplishmemt from assembling it yourself.

Not only is Lin Beifong the metalbending chief of police, she may also be the biggest badass in the series. That’s no small feat considering her competition. This will look out of scale next to Dark Horse’s Aang memorial statue, but I prefer to think that after the finale Republic City decided to make a giant statue for Toph’s daughter too. The convention exclusive with feature a gold nameplate and even shinier armor than the promised regular edition. But where was this when Legend of Korra was still airing? And we can only get it at SDCC? Why don’t you Avatar fans’ money, Nickelodeon?

4) Bizarro Chair Cape


We did not tell you about the SDCC exclusive SDCC exclusive Batman Chair Cape/ So me won’t tell you about the Bizarro Cape Chair either. This one is less accurate because Bizarro doesn’t have a logo on his cape. (Everybody hates Batman anyway!) Boredom Thrae will pay you $25 to take it away from them. Don’t attach it to your favorite chair. Your cat will despise it. Me not want anybody to buy this for me! Me would just wear it like a bib. Me am worst at Bizarro-Speak.

Translation for non-Bizarro-Speakers: We already told you about the Batman Chair Cape.. So I’ll tell you about the Bizarro Cape chair too. This one is more accurate because Bizarro does have a logo on his cape. (Everybody loves Batman regardless!) Entertainment Earth will sell it to you in exchange for $25. Attach it to your favorite chair. Your cat will enjoy it. Please buy one for me! I’ll just wear it like a cape. I speak Bizarro well.

3) The Tick Very Secret Mug With Spoon


From the makers of This Is Not A Spy Van comes this Very Secret Mug. It should look familiar to my fellow members of the secret society known in whispered tones as the Mystic Order of Arachnid Vigilance. (If you’re not a member of MOAV yet, why not send NEC $12 to jump on that occult bandwagon?) How secret is it? It’s so secret that so far I only know New England Comics is selling them at Booth #1807.

The keenest aspect of this mug is its included spoon that stores in the handle. Where has this feature been all my life? This will reinvent the way hot beverages are consumed. Or it would if it weren’t a limited edition SDCC exclusive that must remain in pristine condition forever. The spoon appears to be ceramic so it won’t explode when you accidentally leave it in the microwave. SPOON!

2) Doctor Who SDCC comic book


While other companies charge you exorbinantly for merely slapping a new cover on their books for conventions, Titan is actually making a brand new Doctor Who comic book for SDCC! (They’re also slapping new photo covers on some crossover comics, but that’s way less newsworthy.) The insides of one of the most metafictional books of the year will be provided by George Mann, Cavan Scott, Rachel Stott, and Ivan Nunez. Not to be left out of the variant game, this $10 book will be available in two covers painted by Alice X. Zhang. Look at the pretty portraits! Now you’ll have to get two … or four if you keep a mint copy of everything.

It’s about the twelfth Doctor and Clara saving the 2015 SDCC from the Lady of Neverness. Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman will actually be at SDCC this year, so I reckon this will actually chronicle the world-saving feats they’ll perform at Hall H. They wouldn’t dare pass up another golden opportunity after that 2012 Olympics debacle without David Tennant.

1) Marvel Legends Book of the Vishanti Dr. Strange Set


And the award for most ostentatious packaging goes to Hasbro for this set! The Marvel Legends debuts of Hela, Dormammu, Doctor Voodoo, and Magik would be enough of a selling point, but Hasbro went the extra mile to make its box a replica of Dr. Stephen Strange’s (no relation to Jonathan) Book of the Vishanti. I don’t know if it’s a functional grimoire, but its pages contain illustrated bios that are way less pointlessly vague than those found on mass market ML boxes. Don’t even try throwing the packaging away once you get the toys out, since the Book of the Vishanti is canonically indestructible. They’ve even thrown in a lifesize Eye of Agamotto to accessorize your formalwear. I’d invest in two $105 sets just to ensure I get enough eyeball cape clasps for my Mysterio cosplay.

Dr. Strange’s archenemy, Dormammu (sorry Baron Mordo and Nightmare), is the centerpiece wearing his modern outfit popularized by Marvel vs. Capcom 3 with two decpatitated Ghost Rider heads to juggle. Hela’s doorbusting headdress is rendered perfectly, although her Uru sword appears to be an off-model repaint of Black Knight’s. Magik, on the other hand, is armed with both her classic Soulsword and the modern version that resembles FF7’s Buster Sword. This is probably your only option to get Colossus’ little demonic sister (who needs to be played by Ksenia Solo in Josh Boone’s New Mutants movie) since Disney is being extremely petty when it comes to X-Men merchandise these days. Brother Voodoo is decked out in the costume he had when her replaced Dr. Strange as Sorceror Supreme and comes with a loa-channeling Staff of Legba. Oh, and there’s an underwhelming modern Dr. Strange (without the Eye of Agamotto, unlike you) cast in translucent plastic to evoke him astrally projecting to tie into next year’s movie. I would’ve gone with Rintrah instead because you can’t go wrong with a green Minotaur action figure!

So which of these will you be on the prowl for at SDCC?

You may remember Matthew Catania from such Daily Lists as
10 Reasons why the 2012 TMNT Cartoon Is the Best Version in all Media
10 Ways To Fix Gotham For Season 2
The Top 10 Movies That Were Basically Uncredited Superhero Comic-Book Adaptations
The Top 14 X-Men Characters That Still Need Marvel Legends Action Figures
10 Reasons Why The 100 Is the Best Show You’re (Probably) Not Watching
10 Things That Must Be in a Live-Action The Tick Relaunch
12 Marvel Characters That Need To Appear on Agent Carter
8 Reasons Why Marvel Studios Won’t Make A Comics Accurate Howard The Duck Movie
The 10 Least Terrible SyFy Channel Original Movies (Sorry, Sharknado!)
10 Characters That Should Appear on Arrow Season 3
The 10 Worst Adaptations of X-Men on Film (So Far)
10 Ways to Make a Wonder Woman Movie Not Suck
Top Ten Reasons X-Men and Doctor Who Are Secretly the Same Franchise
Eight Reasons Why a Superman/Batman Movie Might Not Be Such a Great Idea